Preparation for meaningful work and life: urban high school youth's reflections on work-based learning 1 year post-graduation
Kenny, Maureen E.
Blustein, David L.
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Citation (published version)Maureen E Kenny, Christine Catraio, Janine Bempechat, Kelly Minor, Chad Olle, David L Blustein, Joanne Seltzer. 2016. "Preparation for Meaningful Work and Life: Urban High School Youth's Reflections on Work-Based Learning 1 Year Post-Graduation." FRONTIERS IN PSYCHOLOGY, Volume 7, 12 pp. https://doi.org/10.3389/fpsyg.2016.00286
The challenges confronted by low-income high school students throughout school and across the transition to higher education and employment are well-documented in the US and many other nations. Adopting a positive youth development perspective (Lerner et al., 2005), this study reports findings from interviews with 18 low-income, racially and ethnically diverse graduates of an urban Catholic high school in the US. The interviews were designed to shed light on the post-high school experiences of urban high school graduates and to understand how students construct meaning about the value of school and work-based learning (WBL) in their preparation for meaningful work and life. The interviews highlight the perceived value of the academic and non-cognitive preparation students experienced through high school and WBL in relation to the challenges they encountered along the pathway to post-high school success and decent work. Overall, the findings suggest the potential of WBL for low-income youth in facilitating access to resources that build academic and psychological/non-cognitive assets, while also illustrating the role of structural and contextual factors in shaping post-high school transitions and access to meaningful work and life opportunities.
Rights"© 2016 Kenny, Catraio, Bempechat, Minor, Olle, Blustein and Seltzer. This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY). The use, distribution or reproduction in other forums is permitted, provided the original author(s) or licensor are credited and that the original publication in this journal is cited, in accordance with accepted academic practice. No use, distribution or reproduction is permitted which does not comply with these terms."
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